I do all the time.
The Obama administration is preparing to handle applications from as many as 200,000 undocumented Haitian immigrants who want to live and work legally in the United States under a new immigration program unveiled last week in the aftermath of Haiti's destructive earthquake.I understand there's a disaster in Haiti, but I also have no doubt that these people will be allowed to stay indefinitely. And that's not to mention the 45,000 or so that the Red Cross is flying into Florida in addition to those already here. Not that I necessarily believe the 45,000 number either. More from the article:
Those Haitians approved will be allowed to stay in the United States for 18 months and be issued work permits to find jobs.Their earlier estimate had been off by nearly an order of magnitude? They might hit 30,000 in Orlando alone, with more than half of that coming from Pine Hills.
To be approved, Haitian immigrants must submit proof of Haitian citizenship and must show they were in the United States before Jan. 12 -- the day the devastating earthquake struck Haiti.
Local immigrant advocacy groups say that between 34,000 and 68,000 potential TPS applicants may be in South Florida and almost 100,000 statewide. They had earlier pegged the number of Haitians eligible for TPS at 30,000 nationwide. [emphasis added]
Florida currently has over one million people officially unemployed. (Yes, I'm one of them. So are at least four friends that I can think of.) This isn't going to help that situation. But then, it isn't intended to.
USCIS officials said they are increasing staffs at various offices and service centers where applications are processed to expedite decisions.
The goal is to fast-track work permits for applicants, delivering them within 90 days or sooner, said USCIS' Mayorkas. TPS applicants typically wait six months. [emphasis added. Why doens't the government try fast tracking stuff for its own citizens? My brother spent most of the last ten months of his life trying to get SSI. The first check arrived a few days before he died, and the government is sitting on all of the back SSI they owed to him. Another friend has been trying for months to get SSI approval for a valid reason, and keeps getting turned down - but only after months of waiting each time. Our government takes more care being responsive to the shitholes of the world (Haiti, Afghanistan, Somalia) than it does into governing America. Fucking useless bastards.]
``All applications will be treated as urgent,'' he said.
Authorization to work is a key priority for the majority of undocumented Haitians, particularly now that they are desperate to send money to relatives affected by last week's earthquake.
USCIS will try to waive the hefty application fees -- almost $500 -- to as many applicants as possible, said Mayorkas. But he would not commit to waiving fees for all applicants.
``We are aware that some people are financially vulnerable and we will be reviewing the applications with a generosity of spirit,'' Mayorkas told reporters.
Some aid group members pressed Mayorkas to also waive the requirement for government-issued identification for applicants. [Yes, for the love of God, let's not actually document anything. No doubt these Haitians will all be voting come November.]
USCIS officials at the meeting said they will consider accepting Haitian IDs after a Miami Haitian consulate official -- commercial attaché Karlo Pelissier -- said at the meeting that his office can issue ID papers for the applicants.
The consulate generally charges $30 for an ID, but Pelissier said he will check with his government on whether the fee can be waived.
By obtaining work permits with the possibility of getting a job, tens of thousands of undocumented Haitian immigrants in the United States are likely to send tens of millions of dollars to homeland relatives. [Remember, each job these immigrants get is one less job for a native.]